Egypt has substantial natural and human resources. However, strong population growth exacerbates pressures on the environment and leads to an increase in needs for services and job creation. To address these challenges, AFD is supporting the structural reforms launched by the Egyptian authorities.
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Irrigation, Egypt
AFD and Egypt: Supporting sustainable and job-creating growth
Irrigation, Egypt

Developing sustainable cities and more effectively managing natural resources

gare, transport, Égypte

Developing sustainable cities and more effectively managing natural resources

Egypt is experiencing strong population growth, which is putting increasing pressure on infrastructure, services and natural resources.

Promoting renewable energies

AFD supports development projects which promote the use of renewable energies and energy efficiency. We contribute in particular to strengthening the electricity sector. 

Easing congestion in cities

To address urban challenges, AFD, working with its European partners, deploys efficient, modern and less polluting public transport, such as the metro in Cairo and tramway in Alexandria. The objective: ease traffic flow, reduce the greenhouse gas emissions produced by private vehicles, strengthen the country’s competitiveness, and improve comfort for passengers and mobility for the population.    

Increasing access to water 

The country has a low level of water resources and their governance needs to be improved. Water-related issues are at the same time economic, environmental and social.

Supporting the private sector and employment 

secteur privé, emploi, artisanat, Égypte

Supporting the private sector and employment 

With 800,000 newcomers on the labor market every year, the Egyptian authorities have made the development of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) one of the priorities for creating employment and maintaining social cohesion.

To strengthen Egypt’s entrepreneurial base, AFD has partnered with MSMEDA (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority, formerly the Social Fund for Development). Our action aims to facilitate access to loans for MSMEs and support the growth of these enterprises.

We also allocate direct financing to agricultural MSMEs in order to increase local food production and the added value of the sector.

In addition, we support women’s employment and entrepreneurship in order to reverse the trend: indeed, the percentage of women entrepreneurs in Egypt remains one of the lowest in the region.

Strengthening social cohesion

travaux, rue, voirie, Tunisie

Strengthening social cohesion

The Egyptian authorities have made social justice a priority objective, in a context where over half of the population, particularly people who make a livelihood from the informal economy, currently do not benefit from any health insurance system.

AFD has set out to address this situation by scaling up its operations in the health and social protection sectors:

  • In the primary health system, to improve access for the poorest and the quality of healthcare;
  • In the governance of social protection, for a more equitable and effective implementation of social assistance and insurance programs. This project draws on French expertise in this field.

At the same time, to improve living conditions for the poorest populations, we are supporting the creation of basic infrastructure in the precarious neighborhoods of the governorates of Cairo and Giza.

In addition to contributing to urban renewal by financing community works, which promote employment for local communities, we facilitate access to credit for microenterprises and small businesses, the main sources of job creation in Egypt.  

AFD also supports NGOs which work for the inclusion of people in fragile situations (street children, disabled people) and the vocational integration of young people, particularly girls.

Promoting gender equality

jeunes filles, enfants, Égypte

Promoting gender equality

Gender equality is a major issue in Egypt. 2017 was declared “National Women’s Year” by the President.

To support this ambition, AFD is steping up its actions on gender and promoting equal opportunities for women. We participate proactively in the dialogue on this objective, which concerns all our sectors of operation, and we integrate “gender components” into both our infrastructure and social projects.

ongoing projects

Egypt is located in North-East Africa and has substantial natural resources (gas, oil, mines, etc.) and human resources. With over 90 million inhabitants, it is the third most populous country in Africa. However, 95% of the surface area is made up of desert and is uninhabitable and some 98% of the population lives on 3.5% of the territory around the Nile Valley and Delta. The country has very little arable land, few water resources and is highly vulnerable to climate change. The strong population growth and concentration of the population exacerbate pressures on the environment and lead to an increase in needs for services and job creation.

AFD has been a partner of Egypt since 2005 and opened an agency in Cairo in 2007. To meet the high investments needs and expectations of the population in terms of social justice, AFD is assisting the country in its transition towards more inclusive and sustainable strong growth.

We operate through loans to the State, loans to public enterprises, local authorities and regional institutions, loans to private companies, credit lines and guarantees for local banks, and grants to finance needs for expertise and technical assistance related to our projects.

AFD's Egypt office is directly attached to the North Africa regional office in Casablanca.

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